# Lorentz force

In physics, the Lorentz force is the force exerted on a charged particle in an electromagnetic field. The particle will experience an electric force qE and a magnetic force qv × B. Combined they give the Lorentz force equation

[itex]\mathbf{F}
 = q (\mathbf{E} + \mathbf{v} \times \mathbf{B}),[itex]


where E is the electric field, B is the magnetic field, q is the charge of the particle, v is its current velocity (expressed as a vector), and × is the cross product.

Thus an electron q will simply be accelerated in the same linear orientation as the E field, but that electron will spiral when travelling through the B field, due to the orientation of the cross product operator, by the right-hand rule.

The Lorentz force is a principle used in many devices such as a Mass spectrometer or even a Railgun.

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